Hello. I am 4'11" and 205 lbs. I need to know what I can do to drop about 60-80lbs. I have been borderline with my sugar levels since 2003. I want to drop the pounds so my husband and I can try to have another baby. I have a problem with eating to get through the loss of my daughter, Abigail who was stillborn when I was 35 weeks along. I have no money for dieting programs. I am always tired so when I workout I get even worse. I am a stay at home mom of a 5 year old little boy, a student, and work part time online doing surveys. I need to find workouts that multi-task. All I have is about 15-20 a day. Thank you for your time and God bless!

I think it is wonderful that you are looking to lose weight/get healthy to have another child. You have already started off with a bang by contacting a dietitian and asking exercise related questions (which our health/fitness instructor Kristi will address). I am also sorry for the loss of your daughter. It is not uncommon to turn to food for comfort during emotional times in our lives. Emotional overeating can lead to unwanted weight gain. The good news is that you do not have to spend money on costly diet programs. It is possible to lose weight by making a few changes in your day-to-day eating habits.

I would first recommend recording everything you are eating and drinking throughout the day. Make sure you are keeping track of how much of each food/beverage item you are consuming and at approximately what time during the day. As you are recording each item, make sure you are checking the label to determine approximately how many calories each item represents (approximate when necessary). I would approximate a healthy calorie level for you to be around 1400 calories. Now try to determine where healthy changes can be made in your diet. For example, if you consume many calories from fluids (soda/fruit punch/sports drinks), you may wish to switch to water or low sugar juice for a large calorie savings. If you find that you are consuming many additional calories by “snacking”, purchase healthier snack food choices. Instead of a high calorie candy bar, choose a granola bar packed with fiber (3 grams or more per bar). Instead of a bowl of ice cream, choose a low fat yogurt topped with fresh fruit. Select flavored rice cakes and air popped popcorn in place of potato chips. Whole-wheat pita chips and hummus or vegetables with low fat dip make excellent afternoon snacks.

Next look at your portion sizes. Do you find that you are going back for seconds and thirds at mealtimes? I would challenge you to try to slow down your eating pace at meals. Try to chew your food longer and really focus on the food’s flavor. This can help you to feel more satisfied with the food. If you are still hungry after one portion, it may be helpful to have a healthy snack an hour or so before/after the meal to help prevent you from overeating. Some research suggests that by using smaller plate sizes at meals you feel fuller/will eat less.

Finally, look at the times of the day when you are likely to consume the majority of your calories. Ask yourself if you are truly hungry when you are eating during these times or if it is out of boredom, stress, sadness etc. Find an alternative activity to take part in that does not involve food. Take some time to sit quietly and meditate or go for a short walk. Call a friend or find an activity for you and your son to engage in together!

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